Summary: Overcoming gluttony isn’t about being starved, it’s being filled with the right things...
Title: Gluttony: The Hunger to be Filled
Text: Matthew 5:6
FCF: Our desire to be filled with anything other than Christ is deadly.
1. Stats on Hunger
a. Obesity Rates
b. Dos Manos Burrito
c. Other things we try to fill (Alcohol, Drugs, Sex)
2. Hunger is a Signal
a. Needed signal to keep nutrients in body
b. Fasting doesn’t work, Water diet?
3. Hunger is a Passion
a. Video Gamer deaths
b. Jennifer Strange – Hold your Wee for a Wii
4. Hunger is filled by God
a. Augustine (Restless), Lewis (God-Shaped Hole)
b. We want a taste of heaven
c. Sex (Intimacy); Power (to Fix); Food ( God’s Creation)
The point is, these hungers are really nothing but legitimate desires gone wrong. Misinterpreted. Signals crossed. The remedy, then, isn’t to ignore the hunger, it’s to direct it
5. Be filled with the Word
b. Reading the Word (Ps 19)
c. Church (And it’s Groom!)
This church may not fill you, but it’s groom…
He had a passion for life just like you and me. He went to parties, he made good wine, he loved it. But he had an even greater passion, and even greater love. He choose to love us, and in doing so, he made it possible for us to be with him for ever.
You can receive that love. You can be filled. But only if you will realize that this passion will be greater than all the others. He loves you, if only you will be filled him.
As recently as 1991, only 4 states in the union could muster obesity rates as high as 15-19%, defined as 30 lbs or more than average body weight. By 2005, the situation had completely reversed – only 4 states could say their obesity rates were in the 15 – 19% category, every other state was higher. In fact, three states – Louisiana, Mississippi, and West Virginia were in all sense of the word, over 30%.
It isn’t hard to figure out why – you only need to see what we are filling ourselves with. McDonalds, for instance, has decided that a Quarter Pounder is no longer big enough. Their new Triple Angus burger boasts one third of a pound of beef. Or, perhaps closer to home for me, I decided to investigate the calories inside a Baja Fresh Steak Burrito, Dos Manos, Enchilado style. Just that one plate, plus the chips would give 3260 calories.
To put that in perspective, a 5’9” male weighing 195 pounds, only needs 1665 calories per day to maintain his weight. Or, to put it another way, while the average American may consume 3600 calories, the average Somalian will consume only 3000 calories in two days.
As Americans, we fill ourselves with all sorts of things that are killing us, and not just food. The CDC reports that nearly 400,000 Americans die preventable deaths each year from smoking , and 75,000 from alcohol.
And the list doesn’t even stop there. There seems to be an insatiable hunger for drugs, alternative spiritualities and other deadly choices. How we choose to feed these hungers is literally killing us. Yes, of all the seven deadly sins we’ve been examining, gluttony is probably the easiest to quantify, and the hardest for us to admit.
It’s biological, we say. We’re just designed to eat. And that’s true! We all hunger, and that’s not wrong. But how we fill that hunger will literally determine whether we live or die.
Jesus understood this, and that’s why he gave us this morning’s text. As he began his Sermon on the Mount, he just mentioned all sorts of normal people, and why God loves them. Blessed are the poor, he said, blessed are the merciful. But within this list he calls out one specific population that we need to hear. He said, “Blessed are they who hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled.”
Now I’d like you see what Jesus is saying her on the subject of gluttony. It isn’t wrong to hunger, it isn’t even wrong to be filled. In fact, Jesus is saying you should hunger, and you should be filled. It’s just that if you want to be filled, you need to direct your passion for righteousness.
--Hunger is a Signal--
Before I talk about how to be filled, however, I need to talk about the hunger for a minute. You see, hunger is, in fact a natural mechanism. We need it. The body needs certain chemicals to stay alive. If we don’t eat them, we die.
But you know, our bodies give us all sorts of signals, and sometimes it’s easy to confuse them.
Have you ever had a stressful day at work, ready to hit the sack, only to realize you can’t fall asleep? Your body knows it needs a certain amount of physical activity in a day. You can be exhausted mentally without breaking a sweat physically. But it’s hard to tell the difference.